No code of ethical conduct for Supreme Court?

Did you know this? I didn’t.

I have long wondered how Scalia, et al.,  can make, with apparently impunity, bizarre statements that seem to contradict the Constitution these justices supposedly administer judiciously.

Wasn’t there some code, some structure to review Supremes and do something about behavior that seems to contradict the high purpose of the Court?

Apparently not. But there is now a movement to establish such a code. From the Brennan Center:


Lawmaker Calls for a Code of Ethics for the Supreme Court

In an op-ed for  Roll Call, U.S. Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-N.Y.) calls for placing U.S. Supreme Court justices under “a code of ethical conduct, as is required of all other federal judges.” Slaughter writes that “many Americans would be surprised to learn that the nine justices on the Supreme Court are the only federal judges in the nation not bound by a code of ethical conduct. That means, for example, there are no rules requiring justices to recuse themselves because of a conflict of interest, despite the fact they may be hearing important cases that have impact on the law far beyond their tenure on the court.” Slaughter has introduced legislation, the Supreme Court Ethics Act, that would bind high court justices to the same code of conduct as the rest of the federal judiciary. This code governs, among other things, “participation in political and fundraising activities” and “potential financial or familial conflicts of interest.” “Such a code,” argues Slaughter, “will provide an important safeguard for public confidence in future rulings and in the Supreme Court itself.”

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